Businessman and son of Iranian refugees Jon Elist has launched his campaign for United States Senate in California. Elist is challenging incumbent Senator Alex Padilla, who was appointed to his position by Governor Gavin Newsom in 2021.
Unlike Padilla, who has been a career politician for nearly twenty-five years and has not had a private sector job since the 1990s, Elist is an outsider, entrepreneur, and successful businessman who brings a fresh perspective that is desperately needed in California and Washington D.C.
In 1976, Jon’s father left Iran for schooling and was never able to return due to conflict. After the Islamic Revolution, Jon’s mother and family were forced to escape in fear of their safety because of their Jewish faith.
The United States eventually granted visas to their family to avoid religious persecution. The Elist family is eternally grateful for the safety and opportunity America provided. That experience has shaped who Jon is today and is part of the reason why he is running for United States Senate.
Jon was determined to make the most of his chance to pursue the American Dream. Growing up, he attended a local school in Los Angeles and was later accepted to the prestigious Harvard-Westlake School. Jon went on to earn business and international affairs degrees from Princeton, Stanford, and Harvard.
Jon brings a diverse set of public and private sector experience that shape his core values, and that typical career politicians just do not have. He has worked for the Small Business Administration, United States Embassy in Argentina, and at McKinsey & Company where his focus was the healthcare industry. He also advised governments at the local, state, federal, and international levels.
In 2016, Jon leveraged his experience to launch a medical device company that focuses on urology. As CEO, Jon built the company from one site to centers across the US, quadrupling revenues in just the first year with consistent growth since.
Jon has also volunteered his time with leadership positions at major philanthropic organizations in California that have supported Holocaust victims, low-income students seeking quality education, citizens on the brink of poverty, and other vulnerable populations.
A successful CEO, philanthropist, and father of two young children, Jon has now launched his campaign for U.S. Senate.
“America gave my family and me a second chance at life, so it pains me deeply to see how failed career politicians are destroying everything around us,” said Elist. “Just look at the mess that long-time politicians like Alex Padilla, George Gascon, Gavin Newsom and others have created in California, whether you are talking about rampant homelessness, a lack of public safety, a failing education system, billions of taxpayer dollars wasted by the California EDD, and so many other problems.”
“On the national level, inflation is out of control, gas prices are only going up, parents of school children are under attack for wanting to have a say in their children’s education, the immigration system is broken, including at the southern border, and we face many other critical issues,” Elist continued. “The world is literally falling apart around us because of feckless foreign and domestic policy that has made countries like Russia, China, and Iran stronger, while weakening America.”
“As a business owner and parent of two young children myself, I could not sit by quietly any longer,” Elist continued. “This campaign is about addressing the challenges working-class Americans face every day with common sense solutions, a concept that somehow eludes many of our so-called leaders on both sides of the aisle.”
“I’m running as a business owner, a taxpayer, a parent. It’s high time for a new chapter for California,” Elist concluded.